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Gov't defends purchase of armoured vehicles

Published:Friday | September 12, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Griffith

PORT-OF-SPAIN (CMC): The Trinidad and Tobago government has sought to defend the decision to purchase a number of specially outfitted armoured vehicles, saying that it was necessary in the ongoing fight against crime on the island.

A statement from the Ministry of National Security said the vehicles would not be operated in an offensive mode, but rather to protect the population, including law-enforcement officials.

It quoted National Security Minister Gary Griffith as saying that "the only persons who should see these assets as intimidating are those operating on the wrong side of the law.

"The acquisition of these vehicles is all part of the unified effort of delivery on the mandate of the government to restore Trinidad and Tobago to a safer and more secure nation for all its citizens," the release stated.

The statement said that armoured vehicles were not new to Trinidad and Tobago even as it acknowledged that the Defence Force has not been able to acquire these types of vehicles in over 20 years, and were instead utilising normal civilian vehicles to perform the duties expected of the Defence Force.